Every dog is different so the length of their heat cycle will vary.
How long does a dog stay in heat? In our experience, a dogs heat cycle can last anywhere from three to four weeks.
When a dog is starting her heat cycle, one of the first signs you will notice is a swollen vulva.
You may also notice discharge or specks of blood on your floor or your dogs bed.
However, some dogs are very good at cleaning up, so you may not notice the bloody discharge at first.
Some dogs will have the urge to urinate more frequently during their heat cycle.
This can occasionally lead to accidents inside the house, so make sure you take your dog out regularly.
If you are not planning to breed your dog, watch her carefully to make sure she doesn’t have contact with a male dog.
Ideally, dogs should not be bred until after their second heat cycle.
Some dogs make a pretty significant mess during their heat cycle if you don’t have the proper equipment.
Blood can end up on floors, walls, and furniture.
This really helps cut down on the mess, but your dog probably won’t like wearing her diaper.
Dog diapers are NOT a method of pregnancy prevention.
Do not rely on a dog diaper to prevent your dog from mating!
The best method of prevention is to keep your female totally separated from male dogs at this time.
Avoid places like a dog park, where an accidental mating could occur.
Once the swelling of your dog’s vulva returned to normal, and the bleeding has stopped, your dog has finished her heat cycle.
Your dog will repeat this roughly every 6 months.
Young dogs may need to complete a few heat cycles before they become regular.
You may want to track your dogs heat cycles, so you’ll know when it would be wise to keep her separated from male dogs.
Note: What happens after your dogs heat cycle? Your dog then goes into a phase called Anestrus.
This is a time of rest and recovery between heat cycles.
Behavior changes during a dog’s heat cycle
Possibility of a change in appetite.
Clingy or velcro behavior.
More assertive / aggressive toward other dogs. (especially female on female aggression)
Excessive licking of the vulva.
Important note: If your dog displays any behavior that is worrisome, contact your vet.
So there you have it, How long does a dog stay in heat?
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